Craving cookies… (and balance).

There is one cookie left:

photo 5 (6)

And I am determined not to eat it. Why not, you ask? Of course it would taste DEEEE-LISH with my coffee. But if I ate it, a couple of things would happen:

1) I would be the girl who ate the entire plate of cookies all by herself without sharing. If I let the cookie sit for long enough, Vea will eventually eat it. That means she will have eaten at least two,  which creates a slightly wider margin of evidence that they were shared (as intended by the giver).

2) My appetite (and the prednisone) would be winning. It’s a new day, a new fight, and I’m NOT going to eat everything in sight. I did that yesterday. And the day before. And the day before that. It’s time to stop the madness! As long as this little fella is sitting there on the plate, then I have proof that I have some control of my actions. That’s a lot of meaning to assign to one little cookie, but if it works, why not?

The irony of the situation isn’t lost on me. For months, I struggled to eat without pain or consequence. I became so accustomed to negative effects of food that I could pass up goodies without internal struggle.  I remember a co-worker marveling at my “self control” while everyone around me inhaled a decadent cheesecake. It had nothing to do with “self control”. It was merely an understanding that if I ate what everyone around me was eating, I would pay for it many times over. No amount of momentary pleasure was worth it. The willpower comment actually pissed me off. I remember feeling isolated and alone and completely misunderstood. I was probably more gluttonous than anyone else there, but I was also sick. And instead of that fact being recognized, I was being inaccurately hailed for my strength.

So here I am, the day after Christmas, and all of my insides are in working order.  I’m able to eat regular things like a regular person. You would think I’d be ecstatic! I am grateful, but instead of being excited, I’m feeling off balance, tired and defeated. Every single day feels like a losing battle against the munchies. I’ve gained 16 pounds in the past month and a half, and I don’t know if there’s an end in sight.

As I’m writing this, it occurs to me that maybe I’m being a little hard on myself. It’s the holidays, after all. It’s common for people to over-indulge and then berate themselves for doing so.  But I’m not everyone else.  In the past 6 months I’ve swung wildly across the pendulum of disordered eating. From the process of a slow and painful starvation  to uncontrollably stuffing my face left and right. It leaves me wondering who I am, what willpower is, and if I’m just a puppet whose strings are being pulled by fate. Some days my life feels like a crazy ride, with loops and turns, and all I can do is grip tight and hang on for dear life.


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